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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Fiber Optic Cable

A fiber optic cable consists of tubes of glass or plastic fiber which transmit digital data over longer distances and at higher data rates than other forms of wired and wireless communications. A typical optical fiber consists of a very narrow strand or fiber of glass called the core. This core is surrounded by a concentric layer of the glass called cladding. The diameter of a core is 62.5 microns and the diameter of cladding is about 125 microns. The cladding is coated with insulating material such as plastic jacket.

In twisted-pair cable and coaxial cable, data is transmitted in the form of electric frequencies. So copper wire has to be protected from water and electromagnetic waves. In fiber optic cable, these types of problems are not occurred.

The data transmission speed is very high because fiber-optic cable uses light to transmit data. The data transmission speed is up to billions bits per second. An important characteristic of fiber optic is refraction. Refraction is the characteristic of a material to either pass or reflect light. When light passes through a medium, it bends as it passes from one medium to the other.

The advantages of fiber optic cable are:

Its transmission capacity is about 26,000 times greater than twisted pair media - up into the gigabits and more reliable (lower data transmission errors).

It has high level of security and much thinner and lighter than other metal wires.

Fiber optic not affected by electromagnetic noise for example radios, motors and others cables.

The disadvantage of fiber optic is that the cables are very costly and difficult to install.

Therefore the fiber-optic cable is becoming more popular and replacing all old cable system. Today telephone, banks, and television companies are replacing their existing telephone and coaxial cables with fiber-optic cables.

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